Flyers obtain Bryzgalov’s negotiating rights

The Philadelphia Flyers, who for years have been criticized for not having a strong number one goalie took, a huge gamble on Tuesday when they traded promsing forward, Matt Clackson and future considerations, to the Phoenix Coyotes; in exchange for sole negotiation rights with goalie, Ilya Bryzgalov. According to sources, Phoenix traded Bryzgalov because he made it known to the team that he wanted to be one of the highest paid players in the league. Needless to say, the Coyotes were miles apart on contract terms for Bryzgalov, who went 36-20-10 with a 2.48 GAA and a .921 save percentage,  in what was his unrestricted free agent year. “After several discussions with Ilya and his agent, it became very clear to us that we were not in a position to sign Ilya to a long-term contract,” Coyotes general manager, Don Maloney said. “We will now focus our efforts on adding another goaltender to our roster for the upcoming season.” Meanwhile, the Coyotes, who this past spring, lost to the Detroit Red Wings, re-signed seven year veteran, Jason LaBarbera, for the backup role. Philadelphia has had goalie issues the past few seasons and were continuously rotating this past spring between Brian Boucher, Michael Leighton and Sergei Bobrovsky. “We’ll see if we can get a deal done with Ilya,” Flyers GM Paul Holmgren said. “I still think the world of Sergei. I think he’s one of the top young goalies in the game. We’ll continue to try and make our team better. With the position we put ourselves in with Ilya, if we can get him signed, it will make our team better.” Philadelphia will have until June 30 to try and sign the veteran goalie before he hits the open market.

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